- Previous posts have mentioned that Dr Dafydd Alun Jones ‘trained’ at the Maudsley with Dr Bob Hobson and that Hobson and his network spent decades protecting Dafydd in the face of the most serious complaints about him. Hobson was a very big name in psychotherapy and pioneered ‘therapeutic communities’.
In 1991 Dafydd told Dr Robin Jacobson of St George’s Hospital Medical School that he had treated me ‘in a therapeutic community’. I had actually been unlawfully arrested and detained in a locked ward at the North Wales Hospital Denbigh with a number of other people who were also being held there illegally. Whilst I was there I was assaulted by a male nurse. There was not even a pretence at any ‘therapy’ on Bryn Golau ward, patients were simply uniformly drugged up with huge quantities of chlorpromazine no matter what their diagnosis. Patients rarely saw a doctor and prescriptions were often dispensed and diagnoses made without the patients having seen anyone medically qualified. My own records from Denbigh include a discharge note written by a doctor whom I had never heard of let alone met, an assessment by a senior nurse whom I’d never met and an erroneous date of discharge.
Jacobson knew that Dafydd was sexually exploiting patients and noted this in a letter to his colleague Professor Nigel Eastman, also of St George’s. Jacobson seemed to think that Tony Francis (Dr X) was sexually involved with patients as well. Jacobson and Eastman did not report these matters to anyone. It was clear from Jacobson’s letter to Eastman that he thought that Dafydd was quite mad and he must have realised that Dafydd was doing no such thing as running a therapeutic community yet this was faithfully recorded upon my medical records, as was my failure to respond to Dafydd’s therapeutic community. Jacobson did however note that Dafydd had been a colleague of Bob Hobson’s and this was clearly a signal that no-one should raise concerns about Dafydd.
Whilst I was in Dafydd’s therapeutic community, Dafydd was keeping some patients in a cellar. Some of the patients in the therapeutic community with me had been victims of the north Wales paedophile gang and one young woman had been abducted, held in an attic by three men and sexually assaulted – the police had not been called, she was taken straight from the attic to the therapeutic community (see post ‘The Distressed Young Woman Who Vanished’). The young woman told me that one of the men who held her in the attic was a doctor. I wonder if that doctor might have been a colleague of Bob Hobson’s…
Bob Hobson died in 1999 and also fancied himself as a poet – his obituary in the Indie was written by the American poet David Shapiro.
Shapiro described Hobson as ‘a creative and talented psychiatrist and psychotherapist whose work had an enormous impact on clinical practice, training and research’.
Hobson grew up in Lancashire and went to Selwyn College, Cambridge and then to Manchester University Medical School. After graduating he worked as a house surgeon in neurosurgery at Manchester Royal Infirmary.
Hobson, like Dafydd’s pal Gwynne the lobotomist, spent time as a surgeon in the Royal Navy – Hobson served in the Royal Navy Reserve, 1944-46, on the Arctic convoy.
In the late 1940s/early 50s Hobson was based in the London area and gained qualifications and experience in both psychiatry and psychotherapy. He named his influences as being Wordsworth, Coleridge, Jung, Carl Rogers, Karl Popper, Harry Stack Sullivan’s interpersonal psychiatry, Aubrey Lewis’s ‘rigorously scientific psychiatry’ (see post ‘The Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Connection?’ for details of just how rigorous Aubrey Lewis’s science was and for details of his rigorous links to some of the Nazi scientists), ‘fellow stammerer Nye Bevan’ and the American learning theorists. I’m wondering if Hobson knew Nye Bevan personally – Bevan and his wife Jennie Lee did spend a lot of time living it up in London.
Hobson finished his MD thesis in 1951. After he’d repackaged himself as a sensitive flower and a poet, people used to be horrified to learn that Hobson’s MD had been on the prognostic factors in ECT. Bob shocked the patients along with the best of them and having practiced psychiatry in the late 40s/early 50s he’ll have done rather more barbaric things as well.
Bob ‘gained wide experience in community therapy, child and adolescent psychiatry and forensic psychiatry’. He qualified with the Jungian Society of Analytical Psychology (SAP) in 1954 and later became Chair of the Society. Hobson was ‘profoundly influenced’ by his meetings with Carl Jung.
Like every abusive therapist, Hobson adopted what is now called the ‘whole person approach’.
In 1954 he was appointed consultant physician to the Bethlem Royal Hospital, where he remained until 1974. Throughout that time Hobson was Director of an inpatient unit run on therapeutic community lines for the treatment of patients with long standing personality disorders. Whether this was a collection of the victims of sex offenders locked in a cellar I do not know, but it was during this time that Dafydd worked with Hobson. It can be guaranteed that Dafydd will not have conducted himself properly whilst he worked there, so Hobson was either fast asleep or that inpatient unit of his was not what everyone pretended it was. In the light of what was actually going on at the Maudsley at that time (see post ‘The Discovery Of A Whole New Galaxy…’) and the lies that were told about the outstanding work undertaken there, I suspect that Hobson’s therapeutic community was about as therapeutic as Dafydd’s cellar.
Hobson also supervised and taught ‘widely’ and had his own case load. As well as fitting in the writing of poetry.
We are told that Hobson was keenly aware of the hazards of self-serving charismatic leadership – which must have been why he encouraged it in those whom he trained and why the very mention of his name as a former colleague allowed Dafydd to run a paedophile ring and carry out serious criminal activities with impunity.
Hobson carried out a lot of work with his long standing colleague Russell Meares and between them they conjured up the notion that some patients were alleged to have of ‘the persecutory therapist’. Tony Francis was very keen on this idea and repeatedly used it to explain my distrust of him – while he worked with the corrupt GP Dr DGE Wood with whom he was friends to discredit me and other people who had complained about Gwynne the lobotomist. I will return to Meares later on in this post.
Hobson’s Indie obituary explained that he had a ‘succession of psychiatric registrars who later became leaders in psychiatry in the UK’ who ‘received first rate training and supervision on the Bethlem unit, alongside nurses, occupational therapists and others’. One of those was Dafydd.
In the 1960s Hobson pioneered the use of audio and video recordings in clinical supervision, arguing that therapists recollections are a poor guide to the particulars of an encounter. That is of course true, but we are talking about people who facilitated and concealed a paedophile ring and a trafficking business and who ruthlessly used every bit of information given to them by their patients to silence anyone who found out even some of what was going on. Audio and video recordings in the hands of these people were dangerous things.
When I first met Tony Francis he mentioned recording me. I specifically asked him not to. The next time that I saw him I noticed a tape recorder in the corner of the room that was switched on and seemed to be recording, so I pointed this out to Francis. He reassured me that this machine was just playing through some self-hypnosis tapes for his own use later that day. Before I left north Wales a mole told me that Francis secretly recorded all of his patients, including those whom had not given their permission.
In 1974 Hobson relocated to Manchester and ‘developed psychotherapy in the north west’ of England. Hobson established Gaskell House at Manchester Royal Infirmary, ‘a specialist service well ahead of its time’. Professor Kenneth Rawnsley, who concealed the criminal conduct of Dafydd and Tony Francis for years had a pal, Jack Kenna, a clinical psychologist who worked at Gaskell House. The Indie describes Hobson’s work in Manchester as the ‘sharing of psychotherapy skills across many disciplines and beyond the elite confines of north London’.
Hobson was a consultant psychotherapist at Manchester Royal Infirmary, 1974-85 and a Reader in Psychotherapy at Manchester University, 1974-85. After his retirement in 1985 Hobson became Honorary Emeritus Reader.
What Hobson actually did in Manchester was to extend his network and supply an even bigger umbrella for Dafydd and the north Wales/Cheshire paedophile ring as well as for the crowd down at the Maudsley who were concealing serious wrongdoing (see post ‘The Discovery Of A Whole New Galaxy…’). Tony Francis worked in Manchester immediately before moving to north Wales – he had done a stint at the Institute of Psychiatry at the Maudsley as well. Francis was younger than Dafydd but he could well have just caught the tail end of Hobson’s time at the Maudsley – he certainly knew Hobson when they were working in Manchester. Francis’s ‘training in psychotherapy’ was used as his unique selling point in north Wales – Dafydd never tried that one (at least with NHS patients), he just mentioned the Bob Hobson connection when he sent up a distress flare and needed getting out of trouble.
We are told that Hobson did not publish prodigiously but of course one of the few things that he did publish, his 1985 volume ‘Forms of Feeling: The Heart of Psychotherapy’, was ground breaking. Hobson was given a Lifetime Achievement Award from the UK Chapter of the Society for Psychotherapy Research.
Hobson was involved in numerous professional groups and committees in psychiatry and psychotherapy. He was also interested in psychology and religion – he worked with the Guild of Pastoral Psychology and the Westminster Pastoral Foundation, which was founded in 1969. So Hobson will have known about the extensive abuse of children that was happening within many churches.
An obituary of Hobson also appeared in the Guardian, written by Frank Margison, one of Hobson’s colleagues. Margison stated that Hobson brought ‘his approach’ to the Portman Clinic and to the Middlesex Hospital, as well as to the Bethlem and Maudsley and that he was a leader in developing psychiatry in prisons and in child and adolescent psychiatry. Bob knew about child sexual abuse and who was doing it from multiple sources then.
Margison noted that in the diocese of Southwark, Hobson developed an integrated psychotherapy and counselling service. Southwark Social Services sent numerous children to the Bryn Alyn Community in north Wales and continued to send them even after they complained of being abused. In 1992 the MP whose constituency covered Southwark, the Lib Dem Simon Hughes, signed an Early Day Motion opposing plans to close Garth Angharad, ‘a hospital for mentally abnormal criminals’. People who had complained about being abused in the north Wales children’s homes ended up in Garth Angharad (see post ‘More On Those Prisons For Folk Who Dared Complain’). Garth Angharad was not a hospital, it was a building in a remote location in Snowdonia owned by Paul Hett, a now struck off solicitor who owned a number of ‘schools’ in north Wales in which children were abused and which featured in the Waterhouse Report, as did Paul Hett himself (see post ‘Futher Information On Garth Angharad Hospital’).
Hobson’s colleague from the Maudsley Jim Birley – who also concealed the wrongdoing of Dafydd and Tony Francis – established the Southwark Association for Mental Health after meeting David Ennals, a leading light in MIND who was Chair of MIND when it made links with groups arguing for paedophiles’ rights and whilst it too concealed the crimes of Gwynne, Dafydd and the paedophiles in north Wales (see post ‘A Galaxy Of Talent’). David Ennals had been a junior Minister in the Home Office by 1971 when he met Birley and later became Secretary of State for the DHSS, 1976-79, under Jim Callaghan (see post ‘MIND Are Out For Mental Health – Never For Themselves Of Course’).
Frank Margison achieved notoriety himself in April 2010 when he resigned as Medical Director of Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust, which had been ranked the third worst provider of community psychiatric care in the country by Gov’t criteria. The Trust had been placed in special financial measures in order to tackle a predicted 2.5 million pound debt.
The Trust senior managers had been in dispute with health workers and a ballot over industrial action by UNISON regarding the suspension of a union organiser had taken place. I remember a psychiatric nurse who was a union rep being suspended in Manchester because they blew the whistle on patients being placed in danger as a result of dreadful care – this could well have been the same case.
The Manchester Evening News quoted the UNISON branch steward Val Midgson as saying that the staff were ‘pleased that Frank has gone’ and ‘we hold him and the other Directors responsible for the mess we are in and have been in for the last few years’. Margison had worked for the Manchester health services for 20 years and had worked for the Trust in question since its foundation in 2000. After his resignation as Medical Director, the Trust stated that Margison would remain in post until a replacement was found and would continue to work as a psychotherapist for the Trust.
The staff blamed Margison for a chaotic reorganisation and it was revealed that he had employed a psychiatrist who had lied about his qualifications.
Margison’s pension pot is worth 1.5 million and in 2010 he received a 50k bonus – for the sixth year running. A Trust spokesperson told the Manchester Evening News that Frank’s bonus was a gift from the Gov’t not the Trust and it was a ‘clinical excellence award’ decided by the Advisory Body On Clinical Excellence Awards, which determines payments for consultants. The members of that Advisory Body are drawn from the medical Royal Colleges. Dafydd’s and Tony Francis’s mate Kenneth Rawnsley sat on it for years. The dosh to fund the clinical excellence awards for Top Doctors whose patients are dying of neglect comes from the Department of Health – which employs many of the same Top Doctors as advisors. The DoH which is currently screaming for much more money from Gov’t as a result of ‘increased patient demand’ and ‘the rise in the number of elderly people’.
Frank continues his activities as a Top Doctor. He has previously sat on the Executive Committee of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, co-ordinated psychiatric training in the North West Deanery and developed psychotherapy training in the north west. Frank is a non-executive Director of Catalyse, a not for profit social enterprise offering training, therapy and consultancy in Cognitive Analytic Therapy in north west England.
On 30 April 2014 Margison Chaired a session at the Manchester Medical Society’s Section of Psychiatry’s Symposium on ‘Transcultural Psychiatry’. Another session was Chaired by Professor Dinesh Bhugra from the Institute of Psychiatry at the Maudsley. Bhugra was a Patron of Mark Williams’s Oxford Centre for Mindfulness, which was based on the research fraud that was MBCT that Williams carried out when he worked in north Wales with Dafydd, Francis and the paedophiles’ friends in the 1980s (see post ‘The Biggest Expert Of The Lot’).
Professor Catherine Robinson of Bangor University is currently carrying out a ‘transcultural psychiatry’ project with Manchester and Oxford Universities. Catherine previously worked at the North Wales Hospital Denbigh whilst Dafydd ran the paedophile ring and kept patients in the cellar, has also worked for Mark Williams and recently tweeted her support for CANIAD, a ‘service user involvement’ vehicle which is another scam of Dafydd’s (see post ‘Introducing Caniad!’). Rob Poole, the ‘expert’ working on the transultural psychiatry project with Catherine is employed as a psychiatrist with the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board which has been in special measures for the last two and a half years as a result of a scandal involving the serious abuse of psychiatric patients. The Board were told by the Welsh Gov’t last week that they will remain in special measures for the foreseeable future as they have failed to make sufficient progress in just about all areas identified as lacking.
Catherine and Rob were awarded 4 million pounds to train Indian healthcare workers in suicide prevention. The Betsi has one of the highest suicide rates in the UK and the press has reported the suicides of another two psych patients over the last three weeks.
Frank Margison helped set up the Society for Psychotherapy Research UK in the early 1980s and was Vice-President for three years. He was and might still be Chair of the Trustees for Freedom From Torture. He worked for at least five years as a visiting psychiatrist in student counselling at the University of Manchester and Manchester Metropolitan University. Frank is an alumnus of Liverpool Medical School, just like Dafydd.
Frank does have a Twitter account although it doesn’t see much action – he is presumably far too busy freeing people from torture. One of his most recent tweets concerned an interesting paper that he read about borderline personality disorder and the right hemisphere of the brain.
Bob Hobson established an ‘enduring friendship’ with Russell Meares, who is now an Emeritus Professor at the University of Sydney. Meares qualified as a doctor from the University of Melbourne in 1960 and then went to the Maudsley and Bethlem Royal Hospitals for his psychiatric training, working there between 1963-68. Whilst at the Maudsley Meares spent two years working in Bob Hobson’s unit for those with what is now called borderline personality disorder. Hobson and Meares attempted to develop an approach to psychotherapy for this group of people and subsequently developed the ‘Conversational Model’.
I’m not sure exactly when Dafydd worked with Hobson – by 1966 Dafydd was working at Denbigh but Dafydd was still at Liverpool Medical School in the late 1950s (Dafydd was a mature student at Liverpool, he had already been kicked out of another university course before he got to Liverpool), so I suspect that Dafydd was making the connections at the Maudsley which later rendered him bomb proof in the early to mid 1960s. So he could well have worked with Meares as well.
After working at the Maudsley Meares returned to Australia and in 1969 founded the Academic Department of Psychiatry at the University of Melbourne Australia Hospital. Measures established programmes for the treatment of borderline personality disorder which were taught across Australia. Faculties for these programmes were created at the University of Sydney and within Australia and New Zealand. Meares became the Director of the Mental Health Sciences Centre, Sydney West Area and held the foundation Chair of Psychiatry at Westmead Hospital, University of Sydney, 1981-2003. He was the foundation President of the Australia and New Zealand Association of Psychotherapy in 1989 and received the award of Distinguished Psychiatrist of the Year at UCLA in 2007.
For most of his career Meares’s work has been concerned with understanding the origins of borderline personality disorder and the delineation of suitable methods of treatment for it. His ‘explorations have been experiential, neuroscientific and linguistic’. Meares’s website states that the current NHMRC grant that he holds with Prof David Butt of Macquarie University is concerned ‘with work of a linguistic kind’.
Unlike his mate Bob, Meares has published a great deal – 250 papers including publications in Nature, the Lancet, the Archives of General Psychiatry and the American Journal of Psychiatry.
One of Meares’s recent offerings is a volume entitled ‘The Poet’s Voice In The Making Of Mind’, described as ‘a fascinating inquiry into the origin of mind’. In this book Meares draws upon the theories of his colleague Bob Hobson – a man who trained someone who ran a paedophile ring, trafficked patients into prostitution and sexually exploited patients, as well as who kept a few in a cellar. Bob then spent the rest of his career concealing Dafydd’s wrongdoing and trained Tony Francis to go out to north Wales and join in the crime. Meares’s inquiry into the origin of mind is ‘illuminated by extracts from Joseph Conrad’. From Conrad’s work ‘Heart of Darkness’ perhaps?
I have never met the expert on borderline personality disorder who is Russell Meare but I spent the best part of twenty years watching Dafydd, Francis and the paedophiles’ friends in north Wales in action. They diagnosed borderline personality disorders at a very impressive rate, particularly from the mid 1990s onwards. No-one ever explained why a little corner of Wales had so many people with this syndrome or why it was so often diagnosed in people who had complained about the mental health services, even in people who had been allegedly suffering from something else for years. One psychiatrist at the Hergest Unit who was quite obsessed with the idea that people had BPD and who ordered other doctors not to treat them once they were ‘his’ patients was Tony Roberts, who was a Manchester Medical School graduate who had worked at Denbigh. Roberts was warned that he was putting patients in danger but ignored all warnings. He refused to respond to serious complaints and he walked out of mediations set up by and paid for by the North West Wales NHS Trust who employed him. Roberts ‘led’ the mental health team based at Aberconwy – it had the second highest rate of suicide among women in England and Wales. I was told by another NHS professional that it was because Roberts refused to recognise clinical depression in women and diagnosed them all with BPD. They killed themselves, but nobody stopped Roberts.
No-one explained why psychiatrists at the Hergest Unit would often refuse to treat BPD patients, particularly as Russell and Bob had developed a successful therapy many years before and had become famous for it. Furthermore Mike Jackson, a clinical psychologist based in Bangor, published a paper claiming that in north Wales there had been a successful trial of yet another therapy for BPD patients, an adaption of Linehan’s Dialectical Behaviour Therapy. What the rest of us saw was distressed patients being dragged through the Courts after mental health staff had perjured themselves or suicidal patients being refused treatment and then successfully killing themselves.
The experts of north Wales maintained that BPD was strongly linked to people having a history of sexual abuse. I personally knew of four patients at the Hergest Unit who were told that they had BPD and that they had definitely been sexually abused. All four of them maintained that they had not.
One of them had been propositioned by a psychiatrist but was told that was a delusion resulting from them being sexually abused by a family member. Another patient told me that she was locked in a room with Maggie Fookes, a member of the highly abusive Arfon Community Mental Health Team who screamed at her ‘I know something happened, tell me what it was’. This young woman became so distressed that she ended up self-harming – which was taken as evidence that she had BPD. Another patient was a middle aged man who ended up repeatedly harming himself and trying to commit suicide because of, he stated, his sheer frustration that no-one would listen to him when he maintained that he really had never been sexually abused in his life.
The most worrying case was of a young woman who is now dead. She was one of four daughters and one of her sisters who had mental health problems had ended up in the clutches of the paedophiles’ friends and according to a social worker claimed that her father abused her. She was encouraged to make a police statement which she did. Her father was arrested and the paedophiles’ friends then descended upon the family, questioning two of the other girls. The fourth girl was very young and had Downs syndrome so couldn’t be questioned. The questioning continued and eventually another sister made a statement about her father abusing her. The young woman who is now dead maintained that her dad had been framed and refused to make a statement. Her mother was told that she had ‘very serious problems’ which was demonstrated by her refusal to admit that her father had abused her. Her father went to prison on the evidence of the other two sisters.
The girl who maintained her father’s innocence stuck to her story. Over the following years she became suicidal, developed anorexia and became an alcoholic. She was told by the Hergest Unit that she was untreatable. Some years ago she was admitted to Ysbyty Gwynedd after being found unconscious following an extreme boozing session. She ended up on life-support and the machine was eventually switched off on the grounds of organ failure. Her cause of death was given as alcoholism. I knew her closest friend – who interestingly enough received a suicide letter from her before the world was told that she’d been found drunk and unconsious. No-one else has seen that suicide note because the person who received it was also a Hergest patient who had been the centre of an attempt to fit her up for an alleged assault on someone with learning disabilities, so like most mental health patients in north Wales, she has no trust in the Top Doctors at all.
Whilst all these endless interrogations of patients who had allegedly been sexually assaulted by their relatives took place, mental health patients and the former kids in care from north Wales could not make their complaints about Dafydd and the paedophiles heard anywhere.
Because of what I saw in north Wales, I am deeply cynical about the whole notion of BPD and I have had discussions about this with other people. One of my friends has been supporting someone in England with that diagnosis and she believes that a small number of people do have such a syndrome so psychiatry hadn’t got it completely wrong – but as Brown observed, a stopped clock is right twice a day. The DSM criteria for BPD basically describes someone who is deeply distressed and as I witnessed in north Wales, a few years of the most callous treatment at the hands of the maddest most dishonest practitioners will soon produce the symptoms of BPD in a lot of people.
I now know that the people who did most to promote the idea that BPD exists and who developed ‘therapies’ to treat it were concealing organised child abuse on the part of professional people. It explains why no questions were ever asked about the madness in north Wales, no matter how many patients died or went to prison.
Bob Hobson’s obituaries mentioned how surprised everyone was when he moved to Manchester to work in 1974. Hobson was concealing the activities of Dafydd, Tony Francis and the north Wales/Cheshire paedophile ring, as were other people who worked in mental health in Manchester. The paedophile ring in north Wales had links with others across the UK and were trafficking children to London for sex work. The celebrity paedophile of the north Wales gang was Sir Peter Morrison, the Tory MP for Chester, who later became a Minister in Thatcher’s Gov’t and Deputy Chair of the Party. Morrison was elected in 1974.
There were a number of other developments in north Wales in 1974. A local authority reorganisation created the authorities of Gwynedd and Clwyd and these were the Social Services and Health Authorities which facilitated the paedophile gang, although many of those involved such as Gwynne and Dafydd had been around for years and were local to north Wales. However, in November 1973 the status of Bryn Estyn changed from that of an Approved School run by the Home Office to that of a community children’s home run by Clwyd Social Services. There had been abuse at Bryn Estyn for years, but just before it changed in status Matt Arnold and Peter Howarth relocated from Axwell Park Approved School in Gateshead to Bryn Estyn. There had been complaints of abuse at Axwell Park when Arnold and Howarth had worked there, but they went into business in a really big way at Bryn Estyn.
Both staff and paedophiles and indeed the many staff who were paedophiles moved between John Allen’s children’s home the Bryn Alyn Community and Bryn Estyn which was located not far away. John Allen had set up Bryn Alyn in 1968 but it was in the mid 1970s that business really began to boom – many of the children at Bryn Alyn had been placed there by boroughs in south London, particularly Southwark and Lambeth which were right on the Maudsley’s doorstep.
John Allen ran the paedophile ring in north Wales but he also ran an associated child porn business with links to Europe, a drugs empire and he owned brothels in London and Brighton where he trafficked under aged children from north Wales. Allen was a millionaire involved in serious organised crime. There was a network of corrupt professional people facilitating it, including Top Doctors.
Bob Hobson died in Stockport, Cheshire in 1999. In one of the comments following my post ‘Inside Information About A Hergest Unit Death’, I discussed the death of a student who was at Bangor University with me who also complained about Gwynne the lobotomist and passed through the hands of the North Wales Hospital and Tony Francis. When Ros died she was under the ‘care’ of Manchester mental health services at about the time that Frank Margison was forced to resign. She was living in Stockport.
In the early 1990s, at the same time as the allegations of serious abuse in the children’s homes in north Wales refused to go away, allegations of the serious abuse of children in various establishments in Cheshire and on Merseyside were made public. It was a story similar to that in north Wales – children and their families had been complaining of serious physical and sexual abuse stretching back to the 70s and in some cases before, but complaints had been dismissed and complainants discredited. The children involved had ended up in prisons and hospitals and had often been found dead.
Between 1994-97 a major joint investigation was conducted by Merseyside and Cheshire police forces, led by Det Superintendent Albert Kirby from the Merseyside Police. Social workers from Cheshire and Liverpool were brought in to investigate their own colleagues.
One institution investigated was Greystone Heath Approved School in Warrington. A number of abusers were identified – one had previously worked for Barnardos, for the National Children’s Home (NCH) and at Doncaster in Yorkshire and had abused youngsters at all these locations. A former employee of Greystone Heath was Stephen Norris, who went on to abuse children in homes in north Wales.
Another institution investigated was St Vincent’s, run by the Liverpool Catholic Social Services Charity. David Glasgow, an unusually brave clinical psychologist employed by St Helen’s Health Authority between 1982-89, saw boys from St Vincent’s who had been abused and he wrote to Liverpool Social Services. Liverpool Social Services responded by stating that the matter had already been dealt with – this was a reference to their response to earlier complaints which resulted in the complainant being called a liar – and that children were not at risk. Edwina Currie, who was at the time the Minister for Children, backed up the accused member of staff. As a junior Health Minister Edwina failed to react to the abuse of psychiatric patients – many of whom had previously been abused as kids in care and some of whom had been sent to secure hospitals simply for alleging that they had been abused.
One accused member of staff who had worked at both Greystone Heath and St Vincent’s, Alan Langshaw – who was imprisoned in 1994 on a number of specimen charges after admitting a catalogue of offences against children stretching back years – had secured a job lecturing in social work at Haltham College in Widnes. He wrote their safeguarding policy.
St Aidan’s Community Home in Widnes which was also run by Liverpool Catholic Social Services – under the Archdiocese of Liverpool – was investigated. The headmaster Terence Hoskin was later imprisoned, as was a former member of staff Colin Dick. They had both abused children for years, despite numerous complaints from children and their families. Hoskin had written Dick a glowing reference enabling Dick to secure a job in a children’s home run by Manchester Social Services in 1983.
Liverpool Catholic Social Services is now known as Nugent Care. One Trusteee on the Governing body of Nugent Care is Bernie Cuthel. Cuthel left the post of Chief Executive of Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust under a huge cloud some years ago amid allegations of serious workplace bullying and questions in Parliament and subsequently turned up in a senior role in the Betsi with the remit of leading the mental health services (see post ‘The Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board’). The mental health services continued on to disaster although Bernie now seems to have disappeared.
Before Hoskin was imprisoned he was considered an authority on child care. Hoskin spoke at a national conference as a leading light in the Association of Community Homes – another speaker was Sir George Young who was at the time Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Personal Social Services. Prof Nick Hardwick spent 1992 on secondment with George Young. Hardwick had been Chief Exec of Centrepoint and later became Chief Inspector of Prisons and Chair of the Parole Board (see post ‘Inside Information On A Hergest Unit Death’).
David Glasgow was a clinical psychologist who blew the whistle on children being abused but this is relatively unusual. Professionals finding out about child abuse usually keep quiet about it – or they assist the abusers. I know of many cases in which mental health professionals have written other professionals – including other mental health professionals – helpful medical reports when they have faced allegations of abuse. The Waterhouse Report mentioned a social worker who had been found guilty of serious child abuse obtaining a report ‘from a psychiatrist’ which resulted in him being allowed to retire early with dosh to ease his journey. I wonder if a former colleague of Bob Hobson’s might know who that very obliging psychiatrist was.
Some of the abusers identified in the north west of England investigation received help from a Dr Patrick Harper who felt no responsibility to blow the whistle and others gained assistance from the Liverpool Personal Services Society.
Liverpool Personal Services Society was established by the Independent MP Eleanor Rathbone. The Society founded Age Concern – for which Margaret Hanson the Vice-Chair of the Betsi Board used to work – and set up the first UK Citizens Advice Bureau – Lucille Hughes is involved with the senior management of the CAB in Wales. In 1994 the Liverpool Personal Services Society opened a branch in Ruthin, not that far away from the North Wales Hospital Denbigh which was on its last legs before finally closing in 1995 – I have recently been told that one ward remained open beyond 1995, although everybody was told that Denbigh had closed down… What was going on then Dafydd?
In 1994 the Jillings Investigation into the abuse of children in care in Clwyd had just got underway. On the instructions of Michael Beloff QC, legal advisor to the Council’s insurers, the Jillings Report was never published on the grounds that what had happened in Clwyd was indefensible and the potential legal consequences were unthinkable (see post ‘It’s A Piece Of Cake’). Max Beloff is a ‘human rights lawyer’ and a friend of the Blairs. Ruthin is in Clwyd.
Eleanor Rathbone’s great niece Jenny Rathbone has been the Labour AM for Cardiff Central since 2011. Jenny Rathbone was an Islington Councillor, 1998-02. Islington Social Services was infiltrated by paedophiles with European links. A whistleblowing social worker disappeared without trace and it is alleged that children may have been murdered. Ian White led an inquiry into the Islington Child Abuse Scandal and reported in 1995. White was very damning indeed and identified serious abuse of children and a paedophile ring in operation, but like the Jillings Report into child abuse in Clwyd, many believed that the situation was far worse than White had admitted. Ian White subsequently became Director of Hertfordshire Social Services.
A number of people were imprisoned as a result of the investigation in Cheshire and on Merseyside that was led by Albert Kirby, but as in north Wales, nearly all those imprisoned were bottom feeding social care workers and the odd teacher. This was an investigation into organised crime stretching back decades -again, as in north Wales, evidence was produced of a child porn ring with links to Europe and witnesses had died in suspicious circumstances. Social workers on the bottom rung of the career ladder and a few head teachers don’t organise that sort of thing without a lot of help from other people in far more powerful positions.
Cheshire Social Services were described as ‘one of the prime movers’ in the investigation but the Deputy Director David Whitehead made it clear that none of the County Council’s own homes were under investigation. Which was odd because it was admitted that there was a paedophile ring in Cheshire which had targeted children in care. Lucille Hughes, the Director of Gwynedd Social Services, was named in the Waterhouse Report as knowing that a paedophile ring was operating in the children’s homes for which she had responsibility but failed to act. Before working in Gwynedd as a senior manager, Lucille Hughes had worked as a senior social worker in Cheshire Social Services. Lucille was Dafydd’s mistress.
Another person who worked as a senior social worker for Cheshire Social Services was Margaret Hanson, the Vice-Chair of the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board. Margaret is married to David Hanson, the MP for Delyn who was appointed as Tony Blair’s PPS after the Waterhouse Report was published (see post ‘The Most Dangerous Man In The World – Part II’). David Hanson’s earlier career was with Scope – allegations concerning the abuse of residents in Scope facilities have been made. Margaret’s colleague Peter Higson, the Chair of the Betsi Board, worked as a clinical psychologist in the North Wales Hospital Denbigh and then was the manager of the hospital whilst patients were kept in the cellar.
Other abusers who were named in the Waterhouse Report as well as David Norris had moved from jobs in children’s homes in Cheshire to work with children in north Wales. Some were involved with the Chester branch of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality – there have been allegations that the branch was a front for a paedophile ring.
Yet somehow the children’s homes run by Cheshire County Council escaped investigation.
Margaret and David Hanson both spent many years as Councillors in Cheshire.
The role of unscrupulous lawyers in ensuring that paedophiles are acquitted or escape with light sentences and the way in which some judges seem very unsympathetic to witnesses in child abuse trials have been the subject of frequent comment.
On 8 March 1997 the Indie reported that the trial of the members of a big paedophile ring was underway at Chester Crown Court and the presiding judge had lifted reporting restrictions pertaining to details of the case which had been imposed for fear of jeapordising other trials. The judge concerned was Huw Daniel, who in 2003 presided over my trial when I was accused of threatening to kill Alun Davies, the manager of the Hergest Unit, after I’d told his secretary over the phone that he was a fat idiot. Numerous staff from the Hergest Unit lied in statements to the police and after I had been on bail for two years the case was withdrawn on the morning of the trial and I was charged with a minor public order offence instead. Huw Daniel bellowed away at everyone in Court and seemed very vexed that he wasn’t hearing a threats to kill trial. I ended up being given more than 100 hours of community service for describing a fat idiot as a fat idiot. Davies had rung the police nine times in one day to complain about being described as a fat idiot and I was told that allegations about me threatening to kill him were only made after the police stated that it would be ludicrous to charge me for telling someone that Davies was a fat idiot.
Daniel stated in Court that I considered myself a victim of the mental health services but the real victims were Davies and his family – this comment subsequently appeared in the local paper. I had never had any contact with Davies’s family or ever communicated with them. I only even knew that he had a family because of allegations from NHS staff that Davies was corrupt and had secured jobs for his relatives in the NHS in north Wales and that they were abusing their positions.
Huw Daniel also issued a restraining order against me which was legally invalid.
For details of this farcical court case, see post ‘Interesting Happenings In The Legal System’.
I was later told that the threats to kill case against me was dropped after an NHS worker came forward and stated that they had witnessed the plan to frame me and said that if the case against me went ahead they would go public on the abuse of patients in the Hergest Unit.
In 2016 I discovered that the PNC had been altered shortly after my trial to show a conviction against me for ‘violent disorder’. I also discovered that a certificate of indictment was forged, stating that I had pleaded guilty to ‘violent disorder’ and that this forged certificate was held by Chester Court. I asked the legal division of the North Wales Police to look into this more than a year ago but I have heard nothing.
On two occasions in 1990 social workers employed by Gwynedd Social Services perjured themselves – firstly to obtain a High Court injunction against me and then again months later in an attempt to have me imprisoned for allegedly breaking the injunction (see post ‘Some Big Legal Names Enter The Arena’). The second case was heard in Chester and collapsed when it became clear that witnesses had lied on oath. The presiding judge, Justice Roche, asked them if they’d like time to rewrite their statements, presumably to co-ordinate their lies.
I now have documents demonstrating that the social workers were encouraged to lie by Lucille Hughes who was collaborating with Ron Evans, a corrupt lawyer employed by Gwynedd County Council. In the event of the hearing which requested my imprisonment, the hearing was changed to a different court in front of a different judge days before the hearing – but no-one told my barrister, who was sent to the wrong court. I have a document compiled by Ron Evans showing that not only did he knew about these changes to the hearing days before anyone else but he also told the four perjurers that when they arrived at the Court that they would be met by someone who would tell them what to say in Court.
I knew Ron Evans’s wife – I used to work with her at Bangor University, although she had no idea that her husband had tried to fit me up. She told me that when the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal broke, it was Ron who kept the whole lot of them out of prison. They ran to him for help and Ron told them that what they had all done was so serious and so inexcusable that none of them must ever say anything to anyone about any of it (see ‘Inside Information On A Hergest Unit Death’). And to this day they haven’t. It has always been a case of I know nuzzing…
Ron’s daughter is also a lawyer, who was one of the most senior civil servants working for Peter Mandelson.
Social services and NHS staff committing perjury on an industrial scale? Corrupt police illegally altering the PNC? Corrupt judges? All in a days work on the Chester and Wales Circuit.
One of the people imprisoned in the trial of the paedophile ring at Chester was Keith Laverack who had ended up as a senior manager in Cambridgeshire Social Services.
After the Cheshire and Merseyside investigation – which ran for three years from 1993 and cost in the prices of the time 250k – David Whitehead, the Deputy Director of Cheshire Social Services, stated that abuse of children in care on such a scale could never happen again and that the ‘cocktail’ leading to such abuse had now been identified.
There are at present police investigations into sexual abuse and trafficking of children in care by organised criminals taking place in nearly all of the UK’s social services departments.
In June 1998 the Independent reported that a national conference for social workers on combating child abuse had been cancelled because not enough senior social workers had enrolled. David Whitehead was the co-ordinator and the conference had the support of the Gov’ts Social Services Inspectorate, the Chief Inspector of which was Lord Laming.
One person involved with the proposed conference who expressed dismay at the lack of interest shown was Vic Citarella, the then Director of Social Services for Liverpool.
Citarella is a former social worker who was Director of Liverpool Social Services, 1990-2000. Whilst Vic was Director, Liverpool Social Services relocated many of their most vulnerable clients to poor accommodation along the north Wales coast. These people had serious mental health and/or drugs problems, they did not know north Wales and had no support network there. The move to north Wales was sold to them by their social workers in Liverpool as a ‘fresh start’ for them. The mental health services in north Wales were crap and couldn’t support them properly, but Dafydd’s ‘substance abuse services’ charity CAIS picked up millions in Gov’t grants on the basis of the needs of this group of people. Lucille Hughes sits on the Board of CAIS.
I was told by a social work lecturer in north Wales that it was well known that Liverpool Social Services were using north Wales as a dumping ground for expensive needy clients and that once they had lived in north Wales for six months they became the financial responsibility of the local authorities in north Wales.
Liverpool Social Services also placed clients with mental health problems in Prestwood Homes in north Wales, where the clients were seriously abused and seemed to be being groomed for sex work (see post ‘A Convenient Arrangement With The Private Sector’). Clients ran away only to be returned by the police and two clients injured themselves throwing themselves from upstairs windows – one client ended up in a wheelchair thus. Visiting social workers from Liverpool told the residents that the ‘package of care’ at Prestwood was what was on offer and if they refused it, there would be nothing else provided. I heard one young woman being told that if she left Prestwood and returned to Liverpool it would be ‘her choice’ ‘to die on an embankment’. She was 19 years old. Some months later she disappeared from Prestwood and no-one was ever told why or where she had gone. This was in 1999. ON YOUR WATCH VIC. Susan Colligan – 19 yrs old from Liverpool, who told MIND volunteers in Holyhead that she was being forced to watch pornography as ‘therapy’ at Prestwood. She was never seen again. What happened to her?
Gwilym ap Ioan of Plaid Cymru raised concerns about Vic dumping the citizens that he didn’t want in north Wales, but unfortunately Gwilym didn’t choose his words carefully, was accused of bigotry and racism and was expelled from Plaid. Prestwood People Trafficking Ltd continued.
Manchester City Council took a leaf out of Vic’s book and purchased a load of cheap not very good accommodation in Blaenau Ffestiniog and dumped a load of citizens that it didn’t want there. There were no facilities at all for them except for the MIND drop-in centre and there was even a scrap there between them and the locals.
That’s the MIND which concealed the criminality of the paedophiles’ friends in north Wales for years and which currently numbers Robin Holden, a former Denbigh nurse and nurse manager for Gwynedd Health Authority, as one of its executives. Holden has his own consultancy and has been commissioned by the Betsi to advise them re their mental health services.
Vic too has moved into the consultancy business – since 2000 he has been Director of CPEA, ‘supplying support to social work, social care, residential and community work in adults and children’s services’, in terms of social work learning, leadership, management, audit, inspection, governance, business development and welfare commissioning. After 25 years working in local authorities, 10 of those sending distressed teenagers into the arms of people traffickers, Vic caters to your every welfare need.
Vic was a long standing consultant to the Local Government Association and he Chairs a safeguarding committee for a not for profit housing and social care provider. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of Residential Forum Ltd, which aims to ‘promote achievement of high standards of care and support for children and adults in residential care, nursing homes, residential schools, colleges, hospices and hostels’. The Board contains members ‘who can speak for service users and carers’.
Vic is joined at CPEA by Margaret Flynn, a Senior Associate Consultant. Margaret featured in my post ‘Inside Information About A Hergest Unit Death’ – she has recently been commissioned by the Betsi to review their older people’s care strategy. To do this Margaret took advice from Joanna Griffiths, who was Director of Social Services for Conwy Council whilst clients were abused and whilst Prestwood Homes were registered with them and Jackie Ehlen, a psychiatric nurse employed by the Betsi who was previously involved in providing a dishonest account of the circumstances in which a psychiatric patient died at Ysbyty Gwynedd.
Margaret has worked as a researcher at Manchester, London, Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam Universities and is joint Editor of the Journal of Adult Protection.
Margaret and Vic conducted the serious case review of Winterbourne View, the hospital for people with learning disabilities in which residents were being abused by staff. How do these things keep happening?
Cheshire was not the only English county bordering on Wales in which an organised paedophile ring was operating. There was a paedophile ring busy in Shropshire too. John Allen ran branches of the Bryn Alyn Community in Cheshire as well as in Shropshire.
In Sept 1989 Yorkshire Television got as far as filming Alison Taylor for a documentary about the abuse of children in north Wales, but in Feb 1990 the planned documentary was abandoned and Yorkshire Television made a documentary about abuse at Castle Hill School in Ludlow, Shropshire instead. The Secret of Castle Hill was screened on 7 May 1991.
Castle Hill accepted boys mostly from London boroughs – Harrow in particular. The principal abuser was the headmaster Ralph Morris, a former monk. Morris seriously abused the boys himself but much was made in the documentary of the brutal hierarchy among the boys themselves that he established which resulted in the boys abusing each other – a standard technique in abusive institutions and one which was employed in the children’s homes in north Wales. The investigation into Castle Hill concentrated on the years 1984-89. One boy who complained ‘accidentally fell over a cliff’ and died shortly afterwards.
Whilst the criminal inquiry into Castle Hill was on-going, the boys who had been abused and their families were offered counselling at the dear old Tavistock Clinic. However many of them did not keep the follow up appointments because of their ‘chaotic lifestyles’. Thank God that was the reason and it wasn’t anything to do with the counselling being utterly unhelpful and victim blaming. Or indeed the Top Doctors at the Tavi having concealed organised child abuse for years.
In 1991 after a trial at Shrewsbury Crown Court presided over by Justice Fennell, Ralph Morris was sentenced to 12 years. Morris was part of high society in Ludlow so why someone decided to nail him whilst Dafydd and the paedophiles were allowed to continue in business I do not know. Police and social workers received complaints about children being abused at Milverton Court at Craven Arms in the mid 1980s but nothing seemed to be done – many Bryn Alyn staff worked at Milverton Court.
The Director of Shropshire Social Services was Michael Hennessey.
After Ralph Morris was imprisoned some very difficult questions were asked of Ken Clarke who was the Secretary of State for Education and who had shown a remarkably laissez faire attitude regarding events at Castle Hill. But then Ken Clarke was pretty laid back about the appalling things happening in the north Wales mental health services when he was Health Secretary (see post ‘Running The Country – And All That Jazz’) and he allowed his junior Health Minister Baroness Trumpington to appoint Jimmy Savile as manager of Broadmoor, where he sexually assaulted and raped patients. Never mind Ken, have another drink and a curry!
Ralph Morris died in prison in Nov 1996. He was so determined to kill himself that he ate ‘handfuls’ of screws, batteries, drawing pins and razor blades and by the time that the prison officers discovered what he had been doing it was too late to save him.
The Waterhouse Inquiry began in the autumn of 1996.
In the mid 1990s in the wake of the many child abuse scandals that became public, Allan Levy QC wrote an article about whistleblowing in social work and waxed lyrical about the need to learn lessons. Levy Co-Chaired the Inquiry into the Staffordshire Pindown Scandal, which was far worse than was ever admitted and his Co-Chair Barbara Kahan – who spent years as the Gov’ts senior DHSS advisor on children in care – had worked with paedophiles Louis Minster and Peter Righton (see post ‘Always On The Side Of The Children’).
Unsurprisingly there were many news reports in the mid 1990s regarding the child abuse that was so widespread in children’s homes and in one such report Jon Snow interviewed Nicola Davies QC. Nicola Davies explained how keen she was to stop child abuse but had just recommended that a public inquiry should not be held into events in north Wales because there was insufficient evidence – when she was reviewing the police paperwork Nicola noticed that the paperwork stopped in 1989. Well why do you think that was then Nicola? Public outrage did eventually lead to a public inquiry re north Wales – the cover-up which was Waterhouse. During the Inquiry, all the records from Bryn Alyn went up in flames with the warehouse in which they were stored. The inferno was such that some houses nearby were burnt to a crisp as well. The police stated that the fire was not suspicious.
After the warehouse fire Sir Ronnie Waterhouse explained that it had not been possible to trace many of the former residents of the children’s homes in north Wales. Not that he had anything to worry his Brylcreemed little head about – most of the former kids in care had been killed by petrol bombs/in car crashes/found dead from overdoses/found hanging. The ones that did turn up to give evidence were called liars by Sir Ronnie and Patricia Scotland QC.
Nicola Davies QC defended a whole string of Top Doctors who found themselves in trouble including Harold Shipman and in 2014 became the Presiding Judge of the Wales circuit (see post ‘This Is What Happened To Nicola, Niclas, Merfyn, Joan and Kathryn’).
Lord Herbert Laming appeared on the news report with Nicola talking about how child abuse must be rooted out. Laming was Chief Inspector of Social Services for the Govt’s Social Services Inspectorate, 1991-98. So Laming was appointed by the Conservative Gov’t and was in post whilst superficial, perfunctory inspections or indeed no inspections at all were carried out on north Wales children’s homes as allegations of serious abuse came in thick and fast and some of the staff went to prison for child abuse. He was Chief Inspector whilst the psychiatric social workers in north Wales neglected their patients so badly that many of them died and whilst they lied on oath to frame others. Laming was in post whilst the social services of many metropolitan boroughs were in chaos.
Herbert Laming was born in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in 1936 and graduated from Durham University in Applied Social Studies in 1960. He began his career as a probation officer in Nottingham in 1961 and also worked as a psychiatric social worker.
Glanville Owen, Lucille Hughes’s Deputy who managed the children’s homes in Gwynedd whilst the paedophile gang raged within, spent part of his career in Nottingham.
Ken Clarke worked for many years as a barrister in Nottingham.
In 1971 Laming moved to Hertfordshire Council and he became Director of Social Services for Hertfordshire in 1975. He was President of the Association for the Directors of Social Services, 1982-83 and was Vice- President of the Local Goverment Association.
In 1990 Hertfordshire Social Services was strongly criticised in a case in which the father of a young girl suspected that she was being sexually abused. The Social Services interviewed her in the presence of her mother which breached guidelines and police and social workers carried out an overnight raid on the house of the man who had raised concerns and then took the girl to her mother’s and mother’s boyfriend’s, although he was the suspected abuser. Laming then denied the girl’s father access to an internal inquiry report. In 1995 the Local Government Ombudsman found Laming’s Dept to have been guilty of ‘maladministration with injustice’.
In 1996 Laming was given a knighthood – just when the Waterhouse Inquiry kicked off. In 1998 Laming was given a peerage – once the Waterhouse Inquiry had heard the evidence from the witnesses and smeared them all.
In Jan 2000 Laming was appointed by Blair’s Gov’t to head a Home Office inquiry into raising standards into underperforming prisons – the prisons are still dreadful.
At the request of Blair’s Gov’t again in 2000 Laming conducted the ‘landmark inquiry’ into the death of Victoria Climbie whilst in the care of Haringey Council and recommended reforms. After Baby P died whilst in the care of Haringey Council just a few years later poor old Laming said that he was ‘dispirited’ – however he opposed a public inquiry on the grounds that it would set back the ‘progress’ made at Haringey Council and divert efforts from the action needed to help children in the borough.
In Nov 2008 Laming was asked by Gordon Brown’s Gov’t to investigate Britain’s social services after the death of Baby P. Laming produced his Review of Child Protection in March 2009. More children in care have died since then but at least Laming is now a Privy Councillor.
When Laming first began bagging roles of national importance, the father of the little girl in the 1990 sex abuse case expressed incredulity that Laming should have been appointed to such positions after screwing up so badly and behaving so dishonestly. That is precisely why the Gov’t considered Laming the right man for the job, as explosions began in north Wales and elsewhere.
Albert Kirby resurfaced in the local papers in Manchester years after he retired, when it was revealed that Jon Venables, one of the 10 year old boys who had killed the toddler James Bulger, had been recalled to prison after his release. Kirby reminded everyone that he had been the detective who led the inquiry into James’s murder and then banged on about how mad Jon Venables was and how everything had gone wrong for him because he had been detained in the Red Bank Centre where conditions were not acceptable. Conditions in the Red Bank Centre certainly were not acceptable – among many other things a female member of staff had sex with Jon Venables whilst he was detained in there when he was 17. However Kirby’s recommendation as to what should have been done with Venables was interesting – he maintained that Jon Venables should have been sectioned under the Mental Health Act and detained in Ashworth Hospital. My post ‘Security, Security’ describes how Ashworth had been the subject of two major inquiries, how a patient was beaten to death by the staff, how a child was taken in to the hospital to visit paedophile patients and how the nurses were members of the National Front and ran a campaign of terror against whistleblowers. I also explain how Dafydd and the Top Doctors framed victims of the paedophile gang which operated in north Wales and Cheshire and sent them to Ashworth. Kirby will have known all this and a lot more besides.
Why are we not surprised that Kirby’s investigation into child abuse in the north west of England only led to the conviction of a few small fry?